Although things are a lot less formal than they used to be, people still mostly dress to impress. Whether it’s a night on the town or a job interview, it’s considered important enough to make an effort to get noticed. For all the right reasons. Why shouldn’t your copy be given the same importance?
There’s a lot of truth in the old saying. First impressions really do count. Sometimes if we’re lucky we get a second chance. But it’s that initial reaction that sets the tone. Especially with copy, where you’re unlikely to be given another opportunity to get it right.
There’s too much competition for one thing. So many websites to choose from. If we don’t like what we see on one there’s always plenty more to look at. When that happens we don’t go back to one we’ve already dismissed as unsuitable. Unless what you’re offering is so unique there’s no other choice. If it isn’t you need to make sure visitors to your site stay there.
If someone‘s on your site it’s because you’ve given them the impression it’s just what they’re looking for. If they find it’s all front and no substance they won’t hang around. They’ll go off in search of a more likely candidate. Even if you are exactly what they want. It’s up to you to convince them of that. With the first thing they see.
Which will be what’s most important to them not you.
Whatever they’re looking for there’ll be a certain agenda. It might be value for money, security, or experience. Or any other aspect of the business they’ll want to know before committing themselves. And they’ll want to know immediately. They won’t be impressed with effective window dressing if inside the shop it’s run down and badly stocked.
It doesn’t matter how good your web site looks, it still has to be worth someone taking a closer look. Would you trust someone who looked good but obviously hadn’t bathed in a month? Or who had dirty hair and fingernails underneath the gloss? If you dress to impress it has to encompass the whole package to stop people feeling cheated. Your copy is no different.